Album: Ghost in the Machine (1981)
Play Video


  • This apocalyptic song was written by The Police guitarist Andy Summers, who was inspired by the 1973 movie Soylent Green, starring Charlton Heston. In the film, poverty and climate change have let to food rationing, and a big corporation creates a foodstuff made by nefarious means. Summers used the idea behind the film as the basis for the break world the Omegaman inhabits. (More in our Andy Summers interview.)
  • Omega is the last letter in the Greek alphabet, and in a hierarchy represents the lowest member. Thus, while the alpha wolf is the leader, the omega wolf is at the bottom. The omega man feels he at this lower level.

Comments: 2

  • Mp from Australia I agree as I thought it was about the Charlton Heston movie Omega Man also. Should we seek a second opinion? :)
  • Jim from UsaI'm surprised by the "Soylent Green" (1973) reference since I figured it would be about "The Omega Man" (1971) if anything. Too obvious?

    Good track, either way. It gets you thinking about the future.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Kevin Godley

Kevin GodleySongwriter Interviews

Kevin Godley talks about directing classic videos for The Police, U2 and Duran Duran, and discusses song and videos he made with 10cc and Godley & Creme.

Little Richard

Little RichardFact or Fiction

Was Long Tall Sally a cross-dresser? Did he really set his piano on fire? See if you know the real stories about one of rock's greatest innovators.

Billy Joe Shaver

Billy Joe ShaverSongwriter Interviews

The outlaw country icon talks about the spiritual element of his songwriting and his Bob Dylan mention.

American Hits With Foreign Titles

American Hits With Foreign TitlesSong Writing

What are the biggest US hits with French, Spanish (not "Rico Suave"), Italian, Scottish, Greek, and Japanese titles?

The Girl in That Song

The Girl in That SongFact or Fiction

Billie Jean, Delilah, Sara, Laura and Sharona - do you know who the girls in the songs really are?

Adam Young of Owl City

Adam Young of Owl CitySongwriter Interviews

Is Owl City on a quest for another hit like "Fireflies?" Adam answers that question and explains the influences behind many others.